The recent rollout of the Windows Phone Mango update to the Verizon Wireless-offered HTC Trophy and their other WP smartphones calls for a new analysis of Microsoft’s place in the mobile technology OS battle with Apple and Google.
Windows Phone 7 earned more accolades from the technology press as supposed to consumer interest. The new Mango update provides improved social networking integration and other useful features, but will Microsoft’s late start in first introducing WP7 keep the operating system as a bridesmaid to the iPhone and Android.
Installing Windows Phone Mango on the HTC Trophy
Current HTC Trophy owners should have received a notification about the availability of the Mango update. Installing the update is a simple process that involves connecting the phone to their computer, and using either the Zune software on a PC or the Windows Phone 7 connector on a Mac.
Updating the Trophy takes anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes and requires an internet connection. The phone is unable to make or receive calls while the update is in process.
Windows Phone 7.5 Features
At a first glance, the most obvious improvements with the HTC Trophy running Mango are the arrival of multitasking and improved social networking features. Twitter and LinkedIn feeds now appear on contact cards, in a similar manner as Facebook in the original WP7.
Messaging also is improved, adding Threads which allows switching between text, Facebook Chat and Windows Live Messenger within one session. Hands-free messaging with text-to-speech and speech-to-text support is another welcome enhancement.
Other new features include an App Marketplace with enhanced categorization, a mobile Internet Explorer 9 with support for HTML5 and hardware-accelerated graphics, and a Music and Videos Hub with some iTunes-like functionality, including a Smart DJ.
Can Windows Phone 7.5 Catch the iPhone and Android?
Considering the poor sales of Windows Phone 7 devices, despite its fresh and innovative look, there’s little in Mango to give hope for a sudden sales increase in Windows Phone handsets. Consumers seem to be enamored with Android and the iPhone at the expense of all competitors, including Windows Phone and the BlackBerry.
Had Microsoft first introduced Windows Phone 7 in 2009, things may have turned out differently, but Redmond looks like they are playing an endless game of catch-up. It should be interesting to see if next year’s introduction of Windows 8 with its tablet-friendly Metro interface makes a difference in Microsoft’s flagging mobile fortunes.